Christmas is a wonderful time of year but there's a few things we can do to make sure that our pets stay safe and happy over the festive period.
Below is some information I've put together to help you and your furry friends...
Make sure that while you're enjoying your festive favourites, you keep the following out of reach of pets:
Christmas cake, mince pies, Christmas pudding (raisins are toxic to dogs)
Fatty and/or salty foods such as cheese
Things containing onion such as stuffing
Bones (especially cooked bones as these are likely to splinter and can cause internal bleeding)
If your pet has ingested any of the above, ring your vet straight away as they may need treatment. Signs to look out for include vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, not wanting to eat their food, change in breathing, change in behaviour if your pet is in pain.
Hang advent calenders out of reach and make sure you don't leave presents containing food under your Christmas tree.
If you've been gifted any of the following traditional plants, make sure you keep them out of reach of pets:
It's great to see all our loved ones over Christmas but sometimes this can be too much for our pets to cope with (especially recently rescued pets or overseas dogs).
Make sure that your pets have somewhere quiet and comfortable to retreat to if they feel the need.
Encourage your guests to let the pets approach them rather than the other way around and make sure that you are mindful of your pet's body language in case they're communicating to you that they're uncomfortable.
Below are some great visuals for understanding what your pet is telling you.
Especially applicable for New Year's Eve but we should expect fireworks at any time across the Christmas period.
Making sure that our pets are safely locked inside with windows shut after dark is important. If you take your dog into the garden for a wee then do so on a lead to be on the safe side and make sure catflaps are shut. It's also important to make sure your pet is wearing an ID tag just in case they do manage to escape if they're afraid.
Give them a safe place to hide where it's dark and cosy, and be calm and patient with them if they're worried. Playing calming music can also help, as well as providing calming activities to do such as snuffle mats, lick mats, natural chews (if your pets are happy to take food, never force them to eat if they don't have an appetite).
Make sure your last walk for your dog is done well before if gets dark and try to keep disruption to a minimum when home.
Merry Christmas from All Creatures Pet Care and Training! X